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LET the CHRISTMAS MESSAGE ring out WHILE you still CAN

By

Michael Nazir Ali

 

BISHOP OF ROCHESTER

 

A leading CHURCHMAN tells how the CAMPAIGN to abolish the CELEBRATION of CHRISTMAS threatens BRITAIN'S very IDENTITY as a NATION.

 

 

 

EVERY DAY THIS MONTH-Cathedrals-Churches-and School Halls have been packed with people wanting to hear the CHRISTMAS STORY and to sing CAROLS.

 

Yet there are  some  in WHITEHALL and TOWN HALL, in SCHOOL and SHOP and OFFICE, who want to write CHRIST out of CHRISTMAS -ALTOGETHER.

I passed a charity shop window the other day which had the popular carol

The Holly and The Ivy

pasted up but all the verses about Christ and salvation he brings had been carefully and precicely REMOVED.

 

In the run up to Christmas, we have been provided with  amounting evidence that CHRISTMAS is being MARGINALISED.

Reputable opinion polls have discovered that a significant number of schools are reluctant to stage NATIVITY PLAYS or to sing CAROLS, and employers are shying away from CHRISTMAS decorations at the workplace

 

The Chancellor himself. had to plead with a Government-funded network of playgroups to allow the children to have CHRISTIAN parties.

Some have seen in this a conspiracy by hard-nosed secularists who want to erase every remaining acknowledgement of religion from the public sphere. Others have thought it was just well-meaning officials wanting to be fair to all.

Lat us be clear that this has nothing to do with people of other faiths. One of our local radio stations tried to find a single person opposed to the

CELEBRATION OF CHRISTMAS.

-and failed to do so.

On the whole, people of other faiths are keen that Christians should celebrate Christmas.

We know also, from the sheer numbers of people coming through our church doors, that this has NOTHING to do with APATHY.

So, are we back to the conspiracy theory then?

It is certainly true that there is a relatively small number of

ORGANISATIONS

PUBLICATIONS

PEOPLE

-who would like to see CHRISTMAS made a private CELEBRATION.

ALTHOUGH, in absolute terms, their numbers are small, they have had a disproportionate influence on legislation and on the life of the nation in the past 40 years or so.

That have created assumptions about

MULTICULTURALISM

and

MULTICULTURALISM

and

MULTIFAITHISM

 

that lie behind, for example, the so-called

DIVERSITY LEGISLATION

 

This could mean, among other things, that employers and schools are reluctant to have public

CELEBRATIONS OF CHRISTMAS.

 

-because it could be seen as discriminatory against non-Christians and leave THEM OPEN TO LITIGATION.

It is often said that the Health and Safety people are the real government of the day and it appears their meticulous concern for our well-being has also had a dampening effect on the

CELEBRATION OF CHRISTMAS.

-through thoughtless BUREAUCRACY and the desire to be POLITICALLY CORRECT.

 

Christians celebrate Christmas because they want to give thanks for the coming of Jesus Christ, the greatest gift ever received by Humanity.

 

Down the ages , hundreds of millions have been inspired by his life , moved by his suffering, death and resurrection, and guided by his comparable teachings. He marks a turning point in HISTORY (still remembered-albeit politically incorrectly -when we date events BC or AD.)

Without the guiding influence of the Christian faith it is impossible to think of Britain as a Nation.  We owe our ideas of

MONARCHY and the RULE OF LAW to IT,

not to mention our commitment to

JUSTICE

EQUALITY

DIGNITY

LIBERTY

BRITISH INSTITUTIONS

VALUES

CUSTOMS

-have all developed under the CHRISTIAN INFLUENCE.

 

The long tradition of welfare provision and the struggles against

SLAVERY and POVERTY

-would be unimaginable without it.

It is true, of course, that Christian

FAITH and VALUES

-do not simply endorse all that is going on in our culture. In fact , they can and do serve as a critique to

INJUSTICE

THE FAILURE OF COMPASSION

-and the tendency to be

SELFISH and GREEDY.

 

The Enlightenment, when it came in the 17th and 18th Centuries, certainly sought to prevent conflict being waged in the name of

RELIGION.

(though as usual, political and economic factors were more important)

HOWEVER, the Enlightenment's most important themes, such as the inherent dignity of each human being the fundamental equality of all, the primacy of conscience and the importance of an ordered society were all derived from

CHRISTIAN IDEAS.

 

If all this is true, who are the people who wish to consign Christianity to the privacy of the

HOME and the CHURCH?

Could it be those who are committed to weakening the

TRADITIONAL STRUCTURES

-such as

MARRIAGE and the FAMILY

-which hold society TOGETHER?

 

What about those who call for ABORTION more or less on demand and, similarly, EUTHANASIA?

Or is it those who have forgotten that Adam Smith's economic vision was undergirded by the moral vision of

COMPASSSION and ALTRUISM?

however they may be, we are treading on treacherous ground. Along with the rest of the world, Britain is again faced with the challenge of a

TOTALITARIAN IDEOLOGY

 

-one which also -

rightly or wrongly-claims to be rooted in a RELIGIOUS TRADITION.

If BRITAIN is to DEFEND its VALUES successfully, it must rediscover the

CHRISTIAN FAITH

-in which these VALUES are ultimately ROOTED.

So what has all this to do with CHRISTMAS?

EVERYTHING ACTUALLY.

 

The marginalising of Christmas is hugely symbolic of what has happened in the Nation's LIFE.

 

As Matthew Arnold saw so vividly in his famous poem Dover Beach, the

'SEA of FAITH'

-has been retreating for a long time, leaving darkness and barbarism behind.

If the Christian Faith is not to

INFORM

INSPIRE

PERSUADE

(never coerce) us, what will?

WILL IT BE ISLAMISM

or perhaps, another

IDEOLOGY STILL TO BE BORN?

 

WE HAVE A STARK CHOICE BEFORE US BETWEEN CHRISTMAS AND AN EMPTY WINTER FESTIVAL

-that fails even to evoke the PAGANISM it aspires TO.

GOD knows how often we have let down the vision of JESUS, neglecting the VIRTUES of

MODERATION

GENEROSITY

LOVE

and

SACRIFICE that springs from CHRISTIAN

FAITH

HOPE

and

LOVE

We know that the VALUES of INHERENT DIGNITY

EQUALITY

LIBERTY

and of safety arise out of the JUDAEO-CHRISTIAN TRADITION

and we ignore this

TRADITION

at our physical, social and international peril.

 

There is little time to lose if Britain is to survive. I do not make a plea for a return of

'Victorian Values'

 

I want us to affirm the connection between CHRISTMAS in the PUBLIC square and thise enduring truths that lie at the

HEART of a NATION'S LIFE.

 

The CHURCHES important work TO DO if this CONNECTION IS TO BE MADE.

They cannot, at this time, succumb to the SPIRIT of the AGE. Nor should they be SILENT when it is TIME TO SPEAK OUT

This is definitely NOT the

ALTERNATIVE

CHRISTMAS MESSAGE

It is the AUTHENTIC

CHRISTMAS MESSAGE

It is a CALL to enter more deeply into OUR TRADITION so that we can better understand the SOURCE and GROUND of ALL WE HOLD DEAR.

I PRAY FERVENTLY THAT IT IS

NOT TOO LATE.!

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[Font altered-Bolding &underlining used -Comments in brackets]

DECEMBER 24-2006

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THE PEOPLE HAVE SPOKEN-IS THE EU COMMISSION LISTENING?

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Ditch the EU TREATY after IRISH REJECTION

SAY VOTERS

by

Daniel Martin

Political Reporter

[Daily Mail-Wednesday, June 18,2008]

MORE THAN HALF of voters believe Britain should drop the controversial European Treaty in the wake of its rejection in last week's

IRISH REFERENDUM'

The poll comes as the Tories launch a last-ditch bid in the

HOUSE of LORDS

today to delay the

RATIFICATION OF THE TREATY.

And

10,000 people

have signed a

PETITION

on the

DOWNING STREET- WEBSITE

within the past few days

JUNE16-2008

, calling on the

GOVERNMENT

NOT TO RATIFY THE BILL

[WHY DON'T YOU?]

 

Downing Street website is

http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/Abandon-Lisbon/

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JUNE 18-2008

 

 

 

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The abolition of Britain
by The Reform Treaty
- Second Reading-Passed by majority of 138

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Veteran parliamentarian TONY BENN speaks of the absolute necessity of a

REFERENDUM

HEAR HIM ON

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=o0I-ZdvQz1o

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